Monday, July 6, 2015

Gatsby's Objet de Desir - 1920's White Flapper Dress and Black Quilted Bag

White flapper dress for Gatsby 1920's party
1920's costume inspiration for Gatsby party
How to dress like a flapper for a 1920's Gatsby party
White fringe dress for Roaring 20's party
Flapper dropwaist white fringe dress and quilted black bag
Flapper 1920's party hair inspiration with jeweled headband and pin curls
Some girls buy a party dress for every occasion. Then there's me: I have two fancy dresses that I wear over and over. This white flapper dress has completed countless tours of duty through Gatsby-inspired parties and soirees. My blog readers will recognize it from my post two years ago, although I've since then gotten better at pin curls and my pictures are hopefully a little less blurry.

Of course, being thrifty and saving money on party dresses is directly apposite to the lavish 1920's lifestyle. But I simply cannot love any other dress as fiercely as I adore this one. And I'm sure Gatsby can understand my devotion to this gown---being obsessed with one objet de desir is something that Gatsby knows all too well.
Dress: Zara
Shoes: Forever 21 'Faux leather ankle strap sandals'
Bag: Forever 21, very similar purse (also from Forever 21)
Earrings: Forever 21 (old)
Necklace: H&M, similar here from Saks Off 5th ($29.99)
Lips: Maybelline 'Red Revival'
By the way, these pictures are from last week, when I attended my Firm's 1920's summer bash at a cabaret bar. My favorite performers at the event were the girl who twirled with fire and the man who dropped from the ceiling on two ribbons. You can follow me on Instagram to see more outfits and behind-the-scenes!

Last night's #gatsby party scene. Can't wait to show you my outfit on the blog. #ontheblog #blogpost #lbloggers #houstonblogger #prohibition #1920s #interiorinspo #interiordesign #interiorinspiration #allwhite

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Giveaway and Review - Marleylilly Scallop Tote Purse and Stripe Monogram Sunhat

Marley lilly monogram scallop tote bag
It's been a while since I've either reviewed a clothing brand or hosted a giveaway, so today you get the best of both worlds. A while back, I ordered some things from Marleylilly, a Southern prep company known for their monogrammed products. While I've never considered myself a sorority girl, I suffer from vanity and love to see my initials on my belongings. 

Marleylilly monogram stripe sunhat review of quality
The first item I bought was this striped floppy hat, embroidered with my initials on the brim. I would have paid about $20-$30 for a sunhat anyway, and having it personalized was an extra touch.

Marleylilly stripe sunhat with monogram back

        WHAT I LIKED:      
This hat is pretty standard quality for my $30. It wasn't too droopy and the initials were bold and straight.

     WHAT DISAPPOINTED ME:     
The monogram was sewn on, but in a patch form. You can see in the picture above that the white patch still shows on the underside. I wasn't sure if I was supposed to cut out the white cloth, but as it is, the monogram is an eyesore if someone sees the underside of the hat while you are turned around. Also, for my hat, the stripe at the edge was cut off hastily, as if the rolled brim had been trimmed a little off-center.

Marley lilly white scallop tote bag
The second item I bought was this monogrammed scallop tote purse. I wanted a more subtle monogram on this bag (is there such a thing as a subtle monogram?) so I chose white thread for my initials to blend into the white bag.

Marleylilly white scallop tote bag

        WHAT I LIKED:      
The scallop detailing was just what I was looking for in a beach bag, and the $30 price tag (there's almost always a sale or coupon) was budget-friendly. Also, there are metal feet on the bottom of the bag, a surprising detail, and the lining on the inside of the bag is soft and fuzzy. The bottom of the bag is also reinforced, which means that the bag bottom retains its shape if hung properly.

     WHAT DISAPPOINTED ME:     
There is no top zipper, which would make the purse ideal for everyday use. Also, while the bottom of the bag will retain its shape, the sides are soft and need to be straightened and hung or else they will sag. This sag was exacerbated by the way that the bag was packaged for shipping, which had crushed one of the sides.

        BOTTOM LINE:     
Marleylilly can fulfill that preppy persona of yours that yearns for personalized monogram products. There's always a discount or a coupon, and it's worth waiting to catch the perfect moment when all the products you want are on sale. However, Marleylilly does not protectively package their products when shipping, which means your items may come wrinkled or crushed. But one great thing about ordering from Marleylilly is that you get free goodies with every order. Which brings me to . . . the giveaway!

Now for the fun part! Marleylilly included this necklace and anchor bracelet with my order, and I wanted to give you a chance to try out their products before you order any yourself. The necklace reminds me of Kendra Scott's pieces, and it is actually reversible (I'm showing you the light pink side, while the other side of the stone is a hot pink). The bracelet is an open design with a nautical anchor on one side.

Lulu white off the shoulder top and Marleylilly dupe for Kendra Scott necklace
Marleylilly tote bag and monogram sunhat review plus giveaway of Marleylilly pendant necklace
I have enough jewelry as it is, so one reader will get to win this necklace and bracelet for themselves. Shipping is free, and I will choose the winner next Thursday. To enter, sign up with your email in the Rafflecopter below. Following me on Instagram or Twitter can earn you entries. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, June 29, 2015

Sunday Picnic - Ann Taylor Striped Full Skirt Shirtdress

Striped monogram hat and sunday picnic outfit
Ann Taylor Striped Full Skirt Shirtdress
Striped sunhat and striped blue shirt dress
Ah, summer, what a perfect time for a picnic, right? Not in Houston, where the June temperatures soar into the 90's. Imagine my surprise when Sunday's forecast called for cloudy skies and a high around 85. I immediately packed the most Pinterest-y picnic I could and headed over to Hermann Park. While it was still too hot to stay long, we enjoyed a nice date overlooking the reflecting pool, watching kids get soaked in the water sprays. After we got a little too warm for comfort, we moved the date into a movie theater, where the A/C was blissfully on full blast. If you wanna follow my adventures in real time and see the full picnic spread, follow me on Instagram!

Madewell Lafeyette mini nude tan bucket bag
Monogram Marleylilly narrow stripe hat
Ann Taylor blue stripe full skirt shirt dress
Affiliate links follow:
Dress: Ann Taylor (30% off entire order coupon available on website)
Shoes: Old Navy
Hair bow: Forever21
Bag: Madewell, cheaper option here from Forever 21
Hat: Marleylilly
Lips: 'Julianna's Nude', from L'Oreal

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Office Makeup Essentials - Best Work Appropriate Makeup Products

Top office makeup essentials to bring to work
I have a really bad habit of bringing my makeup to work. If I'm running late in the morning, I'll just pack up my bag of office makeup essentials and apply my makeup in the car or in my office as I'm checking my email (I feel sorry for the people I see on the elevator before I have put on my "face"). Here are some of my favorite to-go makeup products to bring to work. 

L'occitane perfume solid perfume - Office appropriate beauty products
If you forgot to put on any makeup and ran out the door after grabbing a suit off the floor (hey, don't judge---iPhone alarms can fail!), don't worry. At least you'll smell good with L'Occitane's solid perfume. While spray-on perfumes can be overwhelming and sticky, a swipe of this cherry blossom scent will leave only a lingering scent in the air.

Internship Makeup - Beauty products for work and the office
Work is no place for your full arsenal of brushes. Besides, how awkward would it be if your boss walked in on you wielding a huge Urban Decay palette? I love this 'Not Just Nude' eyeshadow sampler from Revlon. Not only are the cream shades matte and smooth (no powder fallout!) but the compact comes with a built in mirror that's wide enough for you to see both your eyes. You can apply the cream shadow with some disposable (and discreet) applicators or with your fingers if you're that desperate.

What makeup products are appropriate for the office
My internships have always been in more conservative offices, so I have to save my crazy lip colors for the weekend. Too Faced makes the best 'Melted Nude' lipstick in a office appropriate peach-nude. The color payoff is as saturated as, well, a melted tube of lipstick. 

If I'm in the mood for a bit of color, I'll whip out YSL's Rouge Volupte Shine lipstick ('Corail Intuitive' is my favorite) to add some subtle shine to my office makeup look. The YSL lipstick might look dark in the tube, but it applies sheer.

The silver tube pictured with my lip products is my trusty Anastasia Brow Gel. The reason I prefer clear gel is because I sometimes apply my makeup at a stoplight (remember, this is a non-judgment zone!). If I make a mistake, at least the gel is invisible.

Top best work makeup products
The last thing you'll need is an office-appropriate makeup case to tote your goodies to work. I bought this transparent case as part of a Victoria's Secret lotion set, but I've found that it works perfectly as a makeup bag because I can see instantly what makeup products I need for the day. 

For my fellow hard-working gals, what makeup and beauty products do you find office appropriate? What office or internship makeup looks are your default?

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Flower Shop - Fashion Blogger Clich├ęs

Black and white stripe mock neck dress
Black and white high neck swing dress
Embroidered lace up sandals with tassels
Black and gold tassel earrings
A pastry and sunglasses on a cafe table. A bouquet of flowers peeking out of a bag. A overhead shot of shoes on a tile floor. If you follow fashion bloggers on Instagram, you start to realize just how repetitive and similar their pictures are. There seems to be a formula to being a fashion blogger nowadays, starting with photos of large plates of food that never seem to make the blogger gain weight and progressing to photos of the bloggers' legs as taken from above. And I can't say I'm complaining, because as long as I follow the formula, I continue to gain followers who want to see the same kinds of things from me.

Nonetheless, I still felt silly during this photo shoot, when my photographer guilt-tripped me into buying these flowers as a token of thanks for the flower shop we were using as background material. Bloggers carrying around flowers in photos sure make the photographs more appealing, and sure, the florals brightened up my shoot, but they were so unnecessary and impractical. It made me wonder just what bloggers do with the blooms they seem to accumulate everyday. I suppose I can incorporate the flowers into a nice Instagram picture.

Dress: Marshall's, similar here from Charlotte Russe ($18)
Bag: Forever 21 (old), similar here from Nord Rack ($39.97)
Earrings: Forever 21
Shoes: Forever 21 ($29.90)
Lips: Revlon 'Coquette'